Agricultural Economics Department
grass silage, silos
Considerable interest in the practice of ensiling grasses and legumes as a means of preserving forage has been expressed in recent years. Controlled trials are now being conducted by the Experiment Station to determine the feasibility of this practice and to test various methods of storage. Meanwhile, some farmers have been trying various methods of grass silage storage on their farms. What has been their experience? What are some of the difficulties encountered under farm conditions with these methods of handling grass silage? To answer these questions, a survey was made in the summer of 1954 to determine the experience of farmers with various methods of storage. The questionnaire was designed= to secure information regarding: 1. Differences in methods of storing grass silage in various parts of the state. 2. Actual farm costs in so far as they were known by farmers. 3. Farm results using different methods and practices in feeding silage. Because of the relatively small number of farmers putting up grass silage, it was found that personal interviews were not practicable. Each county agent was contacted for the names of farmers known to be putting up grass silage. A questionnaire was sent to these farmers and they in turn named others who they knew were putting up grass silage. In this way the names of 364 farmers in various parts of the state were obtained2 all of whom were sent questionnaires. Of 190 replies received, 168 were usable. The questionnaire was designed to provide information on the method of putting up silage, type of silo, cost of construction, cost of putting up the forage, keeping quality, and value of feed obtained. In addition comments were solicited on any other aspects or facts which the farmer might deem- noteworthy. These data provide an indication of farmers' impressions and may be of use to provide direction for further research. The information is being made available to farmers interested in putting up grass silage so that they might benefit from the variety of experiences of farmers throughout the state.
South Dakota State State College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts, Agricultural Experiment Station
Newburg, R. R. and Kruse, R. H., "Farmers Experience with Grass Silage" (1956). Agricultural Experiment Station Circulars. 123.